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How can I see the title alt text for website images on an HTC Desire?

I'm currently using the Dolphin HD browser but I can't see a way of getting the alt text.

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Do you mean the title text? In case of xkcd, alt contains the name of the comic again, title="" contains the descriptive text. –  ischeriad Apr 17 '11 at 10:53
@ischeriad good point, I've updated the question –  therefromhere Apr 17 '11 at 10:58

7 Answers 7

up vote 10 down vote accepted

Good question. I'm don't see an obvious way to do that to solve your problem on all websites. However, there just so happens to be a few xkcd viewer apps. I use this one which has a menu > hover text option.

EDIT: This seems like a reasonable thing to try for link hover text, but it does not work for me on the default HTC Incredible browswer:

  1. Tap any white empty space near to the link you want to hover over.
  2. Now move your trackball up/down until it selects the link. Don’t click it.
  3. There! The tooltip now appears. Simple solution. :-)

I saw this suggested here.

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Cheers, that's helpful but unfortunately the hover suggestion doesn't work in the case of xkcd.com - maybe because the images aren't links? The app is a reasonable workaround for now though. –  therefromhere Oct 8 '10 at 11:26
Not every Android phone has a trackball, either. –  Al E. Oct 8 '10 at 16:04
Good point, Al E. –  gary Oct 11 '10 at 15:59

The right answer is to just go to http://m.xkcd.com. There is a link on there to show or hide the alt text.

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Works perfectly for xkcd, but not for other sites/situations. –  Al E. Apr 17 '11 at 16:48

Be an activist and upvote the defect here! Though that's a longer term answer. :)

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Definitely, this is the correct approach! –  therefromhere Jan 22 '11 at 10:52

Not quite a browser, but the Google Reader app lets you do this. Long-press a picture and you'll get the option to view either the picture or the alt-text.

See the attached screenshots:

enter image description here

enter image description here

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I think you mean "long-press". There's no concept of right-click on an Android. –  Al E. Mar 6 '11 at 23:29
@Al: Of course. It's the force of habit... –  Nathan Fellman Mar 7 '11 at 18:30

It's unlikely that there's a way to view alt-text without disabling images. From a technical standpoint, ALT is not a tooltip. (http://www.456bereastreet.com/archive/200604/alt_text_is_an_alternative_not_a_tooltip/) However, in the real world, many sites (like XKCD) use it for added effect.

Since touchscreens have no concept of "mouse over", it's unlikely you will ever see a browser with a simple technique to view ALTs. Your best bet is to go in Dolphin's options/preferences and see if there is a way to disable Images.

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From a technical standpoint, the OP is talking about TITLE, not ALT. –  ischeriad Apr 17 '11 at 10:51
@ischeriad Well, I see they edited the first mention of ALT and replaced it with TITLE, but they still reference ALT in their second sentence. Technically speaking, of course. ;) –  Farray Apr 18 '11 at 15:42

Download XKCD viewer app in the android market. You can then tap on the comic to bring up the hover text.

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You may add the following rules to your user stylesheet:

    content:        "Alt: " attr(alt);
    background:     #eee    !important;
    border:         1px solid #999;
    color:          #000    !important;
    content:        "Title: " attr(title);
    display:        block;
    font-variant:   normal  !important;
    font-weight:    normal  !important;
    margin:         10px 0;
    padding:        10px;
    text-align:     left    !important;

Result in Opera on this comic:

alt text

Caveat: I don’t own an Android, so this may not work.


There is a command line version of xkcd.cm, where titles are printed out.

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An Android Enthusiast who doesn't own an Android? :P –  gary Oct 9 '10 at 16:02
I found the question via stackexchange.com and just wanted to share the solution I use on other systems (Linux, Win). Since Chromium/WebKit supports all the CSS used here and user stylesheets too, it should work. Seeing the down vote I may have to rethink that approach …? –  toscho Oct 9 '10 at 18:58
Great idea, but there's no setting to apply a user stylesheet (in the standard Android browser, anyway). –  Kevin Reid Oct 10 '10 at 18:31
There’s a start parameter --enable-user-stylesheet … maybe worth a try. Link –  toscho Oct 10 '10 at 19:23

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